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tv   News  Al Jazeera  February 23, 2015 3:00am-3:31am EST

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documentary series. "mexico's disappeared". tomorrow, 10:00 eastern. only on al jazeera america. the battle rages on in the syrian city of aleppo as the u.n. envoy to syria heads back hoping to end the fighting. i am jane dutton and you are watching al jazerra live from our head quarters in doha. also coming up in the program security crack down in australia, prime minister tony abbott unveils new counter terrorism measures. top secrets, al jazerra has obtained hundreds of documents from around the world.
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the winner is. the oscars are handed out. we'll tell you who ising home a statuette. we begin in syria where rebels say they have killed 300 soldiers of is sad in the last week. dozens have been retained. assad's troops had captured the northern suburbs of aleppo if a surprise attack, but within a day they were over run by the rebels. these areas are strategic because the government would have cut the main supply lines for the rebels in aleppo edging the siege on two main pro assad syria villages. the u.n. special envoy is heading there to try to reduce the fighting. he has had some assurance from the government that it will stop all aerial bombardments on aleppo for six wings our
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diplomatic editor james bays reports. >> reporter: this will be the fourth time special envoy has visited damascus since july when he took over the job of fining peace in syria. probably the hardest task in global diplomacy. he's already received an initial commitment from president assad for a six-week freeze in aleppo. a suspension of aerial and artillery attacks in syria's largest city. but he hasn't got agreement from opposition groups and in a recent al jazerra interview he said he knew many believe the odds were against the success of his initiative. >> my chances i hope are not super slim because that would in a way also reflect the chances of the syrian people to see hope tends of this tunnel. one thing i can tell them that the u.n. would never give up on the syrians. >> reporter: al jazerra has learned details of the plan. the special envoy will next travel to istanbul for talks with opposition he representatives.
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before the beginning of march. a small u.n. team is supposed to travel to aleppo. the idea is for a halt in all aerial bombardment and attacks using heavy weapons. at the same time, they aim to completely freeze all fighting on the ground in one district in the southwest of the city. people in aleppo have been suffering so much the hope is that humanitarian aid can be distributed and then the freeze can be extended. special envoy has been working closely with the u.n.'s humanitarian chief. >> if he's able to do what he would like to do, which is to deescalate the violence, that's good for us. because it means that there are more places that we can get to. he is trying to once that violence is deescalated to focus on trying to bring some normalcy to aleppo. trying get people to restart their livelihoods.
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>> reporter: there has been nearly four years of war about 200,000 people killed. here at u.n. headquarters, no one is particularly optimistic about the plan, but right now it's the only plan there is. james bays, al jazerra, at the united nations. >> joining us live from lebanon's capital a senior fellow at the institute of public policy and international affairs. at the american university of beirut hello welcome. good to see you again. you have the u.n. heading to damascus, possibly to aleppo. what do you think he is likely to achieve? >> well, he is likely to achieve continuing the process of trying to get some minimum common ground where at least the rebels and the government and syria with can just stop the fighting for some period at least to deal with humanitarian pressure are pressing issues. and we are dealing with areas in aleppo where there is no water
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fox, electricity no normal movement of food in and out. people need medical care. hospitals are almost nonfunctioning. there is huge humanitarian issues that need to be addressed. so that's about the most that he can possibly hope for. the thinking has always been that if you can get one freeze, one local ceasefire that might then expand in to other ones, there have been some local ceasefires around the country that were locally negotiated for short periods of time between fighters on the ground. but the chances of this happening still appear very slim. but everybody has to keep trying. there is no alternative because -- [speaking at the same time] >> excuse me. why would bashar al-assad agree to this? a help so extremely important to him? why would he stop the fighting there? what we gain from that? >> well, several reasons. one, he probably sees that he's not going to be able to eliminate the rebels single handedly. he relies heavily on the a rypiens, on hess bowl arc the
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new national defense militias that have been created in syria and he's still unable to really make a big breakthrough in aleppo. they tried hard the last two weeks north of aleppo and gained some ground, lost some ground, lost a lot of men and some prisoners apparently, including talk of iranian and hezbollah prisoners in rebel hands of that's one main reason. the second one is he wants to appear to the international community to be a man of peace and democratic transition, that has been his line all along. and very few people believe him. but this is something that is important for him in public relations terms, the other thing is there are several other major battles going on or starting around the country. the south is now a huge new -- it is a huge new escalation of fighting and the rebel groups are much stronger there better coordinated. access to the jordanian borders so there are other reasons for him to have a ceasefire in aleppo so he can concentrate on some other issues arm the country.
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and, the battle with isil is something that everybody keeps in the back of their mind. >> great. good to talk to you, thank you. to yemen where president hadi is meeting political leaders opposed to the houthi take over. he escaped house arrest in sanaa and is now based in aden. the houthis dissolved parliament earlier this month and took control of the capital in september. mohamed joins us from aden. what is he hoping to achieve? who will be there? >> reporter: yes, jane during the last couple of days we have seen president hadi meeting with provincial governors in the south but the new development today is that their counterpart -- the governors from the north are coming here to join this meeting today. and that leaves a lot in terms of what's going on in the area here. that means that hadi is serious about rallying behind him. all the opponents of the houthi core in sanaa, at least four
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provincial governors are a are confirmed to attends maybe more including a presidential aid here with us, we talked to him a while ago and we asked him if this means hadi is making aden a provisional capital and telling the world i am the legitimate president and you should look at this situation in that light. he told me he, president hadi doesn't everyone need to declare that he's the legitimate president, he is, because his resignation was rejected by the parliament and the deadline for any division of that is now passed. he is now as you said, as i said, he is now rallying rallying behind him the a point of the houthis. people that support that yet massey in the country. the meaning of this is yes he's the legitimate president and the de facto capital now is "america tonight" aden, we don't need to did he delay that internationally. i asked him about foreign support. and he said that everything hinges on what the u.n. is
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doing. i mean the u.n. staff towards the coup was critted here as not harsh enough or not clear enough considering that the u.n. in the past has always insisted on supporting legitimacy in yemen. we have seen that until now the representative of the u.n. envoy to yemen has not yet come to visit hadi. and has not yet given some clear word about, you know, what the u.n. is going to do next. he is in sauna and is providing over those talks. >> did you for that. eye run i can't and the u.s. has held a high-level talk. the foreign minister and the u.s. second of state john kerry met on the sidelines of a geneva summit. john kerry said significant caps still remain address of a march deadline for ideal. iran's president hassan rouhani
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says he's determined to reach an agreement, though. >> translator: it is not possible for a country to develop in isolation. no one can isolate us, but with that incite we are likely to isolate ourselves. if we are united and move ahead wisely, no power in the world can isolate us. we have our position in the world. >> al jazerra's investment i have unit has obtained hundreds of secret intelligence documents from agent is as around the world. in the coming days we will receiver the spy cable million dollars collaboration with aj plus and the guardian newspaper. here is phil reese with a round roundup of what's in store. ♪ ♪ >> reporter: the spy cables. hundreds of intelligence documents leaked to al jazerra's investigative unit. ranging from confidential to top secret. they come from the world's major
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agencies. israel britain's mi6. russia fsb. and south africa, which now faces its largest and possibly most damaging leak. >> the state security agency that hasn't yet heard of edward snow zenden. snowden i little south africans may get a shot of the slide back of the democratic control on his the security apparatus. >> reporter: over the coming days, al jazerra will reveal a wide range of stories contained within the spy cables. documents will be redacted to protect identities. the stories expose dozens of operational secrets from all over the globe. dating from 2006, right up to december last year. they include the israeli true assessment of iran as nuclear program. an a sass face property targeting an african union leader and an mi6 operation to recruit a north korean spy.
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>> governments and presidents, ministers, use the intelligence services for their own political purposes. but you can also have it play the other way. where the agencies manipulate the poll sins for their ona general duhs. >> reporter: the papers reveal abuses of power and cover ups carried out by the world's intelligence agencies. they expose unethical actions secret front companies and embarrassing security failures. overall, the spy cables offer an unprecedented insight in to the highly politicized and secret world of intelligence. phil reese, al jazerra. and our coverage of the spy cables begins here on al askar at 1800 gmt. still to come on the program. pakistan registers millions of prepaid mobile phone cards in a bid to prevent terrorist actives.
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plus. >> reporter: i am faiz jamil in an indian village that has free public why identify and other public amenities coming up we'll look at how this village set itself apart. >> techknow's team of experts show you how the miracles of science... >> this is my selfie, what can you tell me about my future? >> can affect and surprise us. >> don't try this at home. >> "techknow" where technology meets humanity. tomorrow, 5:30 eastern.
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>> tuesday on "the stream". >> selling cocaine was my purpose. >> they had been trafficking on behalf of the united states government. >> renowned filmmaker marc levin discusses his new movie "freeway: crack in the system". "the stream". tuesday, 12:30 eastern. only on al jazeera america. ♪ ♪ the top stories on al jazerra, in syria rebels fights the government of bashar al-assad said they have killed 300 of his soldiers in the past week. assad's troops had captured the northern suburbs of aleppo in a surprise attack but they were over run by the rebels within a couple of days. houthi rebels have ejected a
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call to move the talks to aden. president hadi made the question on tv he insist he's still the legitimate leader the country. iran and the u.s. held the highest level meeting in 30 years to discuss teheran's nuclear program. the u.s. secretary of state john kerry met on the sidelines of a geneva summit. -y i didn't want's president abdel fattah el-sisi is calling for a joint military force to fight groups like isil and defended air strikes in libya after an isil-linked group claimed responsibility for killing 21 egyptian coptic christians last week. the retrial of two al jazerra journalists resume in cairo on monday. victoria gatenby reports. >> reporter: a rare moment of good news. day one of the retrial and the
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judge freed the men on bail with fahmy order today pay a security bond just over $30,000. mohamed didn't have to pay bail because he's an egyptian citizen. fahmy gave up his egyptian citizenship to speed up his release. they were free after 411 days behind bars. bahar went home to his wife and their three children. he missed the birth of hits son while he was in jail. >> it's finally i am home. the children was different. it was like something different as soon as they saw me they saw me on the stairs they suddenly jump and we -- so i took them and start hugging them. and we start playing and start i think i start crying. this is the first time my children start telling me stop going to work. don't leave again. you have been -- you spent too much time at work, don't go again. we want to you stay. >> reporter: meanwhile, mohamed fahmy returned home to his family and his fiancé.
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but their ordeal is far from over. the men stands accused of aiding the muslim brotherhood. which was declared a terrorist organization just fours days before they were arrested on december 29th, 2013. in the months that followed, they stood trial along side their colleague peter greste in what legal experts called a as far as. on june 23rd they were found guilty and sentenced to between seven and 10 years in prison. six other al jazerra colleagues were sentenced in absentia to a decade each behind bars. the global journalist commune community demanded their immediate release in a string of frosts around the world world. 2015 brought new hope on january 1st the court of cassation threw out the men's convictions and ordered a retrial. meanwhile, diplomatic efforts to deport australian peter greste paid off. on february 1st after 400 days in jail he was accepted home. he more than anyone is aware
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that the campaign for to free our two remaining colleagues must be louder than ever before. >> we have a platform. people have identified us with the cause very strongly. and, you know, i think it would be an abrogated of our responsibility to walkway from that. ill like to keep talking about it. i think it's an important thing. it is worth discussing. >> reporter: effort to his deport mohamed fahmy to canada have proved unsuccessful so far. and for now his fate and that of bahar mohamed lies once again in the hands of the egyptian judiciary. victoria gatens gatenby al jazerra. australian prime minister has unveiled a range of new national security measures, tony abbott said they are part of a strategy to count are a long-term era of terrorism, his words. the measures which follow report in to last year's attack on a cafe? sydney including strengthening the laws and revoking the citizenship of suspected fighters be andrew thomas has
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this update from sydney. >> reporter: the threat to australia tony abbott said or of a terrorist attack had never been great. he said there are 400 high priority cases being looked in to right now and that is double the number of poe fen shall threats that this were a year ago. he said there are 90 australians who have traveled to the middle east to fight alongside islamic state fighters. those people could pose a threat where they could come back. and he also said there huh have been two focal attacks on australian soil one in melbourne on policeman and the siege in the cafe in the i hadal of sydney. he said too often the benefit of the doubt has been given to individual that might seek to do harm the balance needed to shift away from personal freedom and board the safety of the community as a whole. with that in mind he's going to announce a rash of new mesh us, for example the stripping of australian sit sin shep to team with dual nationality, two pass
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poured if they are thought to pies threat to australians and he also said as well, that he's looking to ban group that his don't condemn attacks elsewhere. that perhaps encourage in his words, attacks elsewhere. there is a group here which while not encouraging attacks hasn't been seen to condemn them enough. and tony abbott said those sorts of groups could be bad. he also called on muslim leaders to do more to condemn rad salism. >> i have often heard western leaders describe islam as a religion of peace. i wish more muslim leaders would say that more often and mean it. everybody, including muslim community leaders needs to speak up clearly because no matter what the grievance violence against innocence must surely be a blasphemy against all religion. >> reporter: those comments are already proving controversial. muslim leaders say this that he do condemn all kind of violent attacks and to suggest they don't tars the muslim community
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as a whole. the afghan army is fighting the taliban in the southern province. it was launch today try to weaken the taliban before their springs offensive. most troops have left. but 10,000 remain. the u.s. is reassessing its plan after the afghan army suffered heavy losses last year. >> i train these holy warriors so they can sacrifice themselves in the name of god. they are following god's orders and risking their souls fighting in difficult situations. >> pakistan's mobile phone operators have until thursday to verify more than 100 million prepaid sim cards the government launched biometric verification scheme after a taliban attack on a school killed 145 people in december. over 70 countries around the world have made the registration of prepaid users mandatory. countries like afghanistan and china are considering the same steps.
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nations including canada, the czech republic, new zealand romania and the u.k. have rejected the measure. in its most recent report the association of mobile operators says there is no evidence that a lack of sim card registration increases the risk of criminal nar or terrorist actives. kamal hider sent this report. >> reporter: under the new action plan the minister has made it mandatory that all phone providers in fanning have to reverify the sims issued to its customers. people is that have numbers in pakistan have to go and show their identity papers, you can see people queing across pakistan at the telephone company offerings in order to insure that their phones are not blocked. after the deadline, any unverified sim will be automatically blocked. the people will have to bring their national identity cards. they have to go it a biometric
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process. now, the government says it's doing this. in order to insure that these sims are not used in heinous crimes and act of terror in the part many of the -- in the past many bomb blasts in pakistan have taken place through mobile telephones. the government want to insure that there are no loopholes left there. but importantly it has deal with 103 million sims a herculean task by any stretch of the imagination. a small indian village has undergone a massive transformation over the past eight years. it now has fully paved roads water purifying planned and even wifi. largely done to an engineer, the village is setting an example for the rest of the country. al jazerra went there to find out more. >> reporter: at first glance, it looks like any other village in india. but that changes if you look and
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listen closely. an engineer responsible for the high-tech amenities in the village, including if he wants 24 security cameras and free public wifi. growing up in this village he remembers wading through mud to get to school. today it's very different. >> 100 percent. >> translator: we have paved roads and water supply as well as high-tech amenities, even apps so parents can watch their cuts' activities in school. >> reporter: the changes here are focused on helping people. the free public wifi has been popular with villagers who surf the web and can now get work done with a few taps of screen. >> translator: wifi has made a real difference, i don't have to travel all the way to the city to fill out government forms, i can do that sitting here. >> reporter: the process has been strategic starting with building proper roads, then this water purification plant.
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but sales 20 leaders of water for 6 cents. and a public address system that envelopes people with local news. aside from high-tech investments such as free public wifi and cctv cameras this mobile library helps people educate themselves. villagers say it's the utilization of existing government funding and the foresight to use it which separates this village from most address in the country. and that contrast is clear in the nearby village where the roads are crumbling and there is little sanitation. let alone things such as wifi or public cameras. this subdistrict official says other villages in the area are slowly learning from their example. he credits the villages forward think to go its leaders. >> translator: the villages nearby are headed by older men who weren't as aware or motivated to learn about government programs. these guys they are young active, willing to take advice
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no wonder they ever progressed. >> reporter: the next step for the town is to continue its development with plan to his improve the lack look of the vellum and build public parks demonstrating the journey of one village as it blends the traditional with the modern, faiz jamil, al jazerra. hollywood's biggest night is over. the oscars have been handed out and academy award watchers say the pick were predictable with "birdman" taking the top award for best picture. phil lavelle is in los angeles with the roundup of who went home with a golden statuette. >> the oscar goes to. "birdman." >> reporter: well, no surprise there then. "birdman" always stood a good chance, it ever inevitable it would be this or "boy load legal that took it. the director was an indication
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that "birdman" would get best picture. it didn't yield best actor that went to eddie redmayne for his perform's as professor steven hawking in "the theory of everything." his acceptance speech lightly clumsy but incredibly humble. you can see this is a man just getting the hold hang of the business. >> this oscar wow. this oscar this belongs to all of those people around the world battling als. >> and the oscar goes to. julianne moore "still alice." >> reporter: she has been storming through award season it was never in doubt that she would get the best actress as was that of patricia arquette. the best support supporting actress, 12 years until making and she had one big speech ready to a
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political time. >> it's our time to have wage equality and once and for all and equal rights for women in the united states of america. [ cheering and applause ] >> i am not going to leave you. i am not going to go anywhere. i am going it stay right with you. >> reporter: crisis hotline veterans took one for best document are you short this a snapshot of the volunteers who man the phones talking war veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder out of taking their own lives. >> in the end if you publish the source material i will likely be immediately implicated. >> reporter: best documentary feature went to citizen four, the story of edward snow sen's leaks about the nsa's mass surveillance program. filmed by journalist eden lifted to help him from the very start. and so hod wood's big night is over. was it an everything of surprises? no. the predictions were spot on. yes, controversy over some of the movies and some over movie that were omitted too. but ultimately the academy did what the academy does, it picked the film it looks like and there
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are 25 very happy winners as a result. phil lavelle. al jazerra, at the oscars in hollywood. and if you want to remind yourself of who the winners and losers are and any other news on this bulletin think check out our website al the price of a human life - a lot of shows won't touch. we go in depth. you'll meet a man who spent years on death row, and was acquitted. he didn't get a dime. then i talk to ken, a man in charge. high profile compensation case, including 9/11, g.m. recall and the boston marathon.


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